3 Keys to Quick Drupal 8 Site Builds

Melissa Okada

At Aten, a lot of our time is spent building intricate digital platforms over lengthy time frames, so when the National Center for Women and Information Technology approached us about collaborating to develop the Tech Inclusion Pledge microsite in just two weeks we took full advantage of the opportunity. Below are a few tools and strategies the project team used to build quickly.

Simple Workflows

The Tech Inclusion Pledge microsite was built in Drupal 8 -- an exceptional platform for publishing. For this microsite, the most important piece was getting prominent U.S. tech companies to submit a pledge, which is more than just making a statement. Workflows for submission, review, and publishing all had to be in the platform. Custom email modules are still in their infancy for Drupal 8, but the team was able to put together a custom email notification. Once a pledge was submitted that contained relevant information the admin would be notified and linked directly to the site.

Docker

Setting up a deployment strategy using Docker allowed the team to build rapidly and easily deploy changes. Using Docker helped setup an identical local development and production environment. If the site was working locally, the developers were confident it would work in production.

Twig

In Drupal 8, Twig replaces PHPTemplate as the default templating engine. The Tech Inclusion design was implemented first in static HTML files which allowed front-end development to move forward while a back-end developer setup Drupal. Making the static files dynamic was a simple matter of replacing static HTML with dynamic markup, and a piece of cake once back-end development was complete.

The project team for the Tech Inclusion Pledge included one of our backend developers, an engineering director, and a user experience expert. Having a team with a clear separation of tasks allowed the project to go smoothly, and the added bonus of having complete trust from the client helped the team work quickly.

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